III. Ahmed
CKM 2018-19 / Aziz Yardımlı








III. Ahmed

  Ahmed III 1673-1736 1703-1730
“Enjoying Coffee” (French School; first half of the 18th century)


Ahmed III

Ahmed III 1673-1736 1703-1730 (W)

Ahmed III
Born: 30 December 1673 Died: 1 July 1736[aged 62]
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Mustafa II
Sultan of the Ottoman Empire
22 August 1703 – 1 October 1730
Succeeded by
Mahmud I
Sunni Islam titles
Preceded by
Mustafa II
Caliph of the Ottoman Caliphate
22 August 1703 – 1 October 1730
Succeeded by
Mahmud I



23rd Ottoman Sultan (Emperor)
Reign 22 August 1703 – 1 October 1730
Predecessor Mustafa II
Successor Mahmud I
Born 30 December 1673
Hacıoğlu Pazarcık, Ottoman Empire
(present day Dobrich, Bulgaria)
Died 1 July 1736 (aged 62)
Constantinople, Ottoman Empire
(present day Istanbul, Turkey)
Consorts Mihrişah Kadın
Şermi Kadın
among others
Issue see below
Full name
Ahmed bin Mehmed
Dynasty Ottoman
Father Mehmed IV
Mother Gülnuş Sultan
Religion Sunni Islam



Family (W)

  • Emetullah Kadın (died 1739, buried in Eyüp Sultan Mosque);
  • Rukiye Kadın;
  • Emine Mihrişah Kadın (died 1732, buried in New Mosque, Istanbul);
  • Rabia Şermi Kadın (died 1732, buried in New Mosque, Istanbul);
  • Ümmügülsüm Kadın (died 1768, buried in New Mosque, Istanbul);
  • Hatice Kadın (died 1721-22, buried in New Mosque, Istanbul);
  • Fatma Kadın (died 1732, buried in New Mosque, Istanbul);
  • Emine Muslı Kadın (died 1750, buried in New Mosque, Istanbul);
  • Hanife Kadın (died 1750, buried in New Mosque, Istanbul);
  • Zeynep Kadın (died 1757, buried in New Mosque, Istanbul);
  • Şahin Kadın (died 1732, buried in New Mosque, Istanbul);
  • Hace Hanım Kadın;

  • Şehzade Mehmed (26 November 1705 - died young);
  • Şehzade Isa (23 February 1706 - 25 May 1706);
  • Şehzade Ali (18 June 1706 - 12 September 1706);
  • Şehzade Selim (8 September 1707 - 5 May 1708);
  • Şehzade Murad (2 February 1708 - 1 April 1708);
  • Şehzade Abdülmelik (12 December 1709 - 23 March 1711);
  • Şehzade Süleyman (25 August 1710 - 11 December 1732), son of Mihrişah Kadın;
  • Şehzade Mehmed (20 October 1712 – 15 July 1713),
  • Şehzade Selim (21 March 1715 – 11 April 1717) son of Hace Hanım Kadın;
  • Şehzade Mehmed (14 January 1717 - murdered 22 December 1756)
  • Mustafa III (28 January 1717 - 21 January 1774), son of Mihrişah Kadın;
  • Şehzade Bayezid (4 October 1718 - 25 January 1771);
  • Şehzade Abdullah (18 December 1719 - 19 December 1719);
  • Şehzade Ibrahim (8 January 1721 - 4 April 1721, buried in New Mosque, Istanbul);
  • Şehzade Numan (22 February 1723 - 29 December 1764);
  • Abdul Hamid I (20 March 1725 - 7 April 1789), son of Şermi Kadın;
  • Şehzade Seyfeddin (3 February 1728 – 13 October 1732);

  • Fatma Sultan (22 September 1704 – 4 January 1733), daughter of Emetullah Kadın.
  • Hatice Sultan (21 January 1707 – 8 December 1708);
  • Rukiye Sultan (10 May 1707 – 29 August 1707);
  • Zeynep Sultan (8 February 1708 – 5 October 1708);
  • Ümmügülsüm Sultan (11 February 1708 – 28 November 1732);
  • Zeyneb Sultan (5 January 1710 – 1 August 1710);
  • Hatice Sultan (4 October 1710 – 1738), daughter of Rukiye Kadın;
  • Atike Sultan (29 March 1712 – 2 April 1738);
  • Rukiye Sultan (6 March 1712 – 26 November 1714);
  • Zeynep Sultan (8 April 1714 – 25 March 1774);
  • Saliha Sultan (20 April 1715 – 11 October 1778), daughter of Hace Hanım Kadın;
  • Ayşe Sultan (24 November 1718 – 3 October 1776), daughter of Emine Muslıhe Kadın;
  • Rabia Sultan (19 November 1719 – died in infancy)
  • Emetullah Sultan (23 December 1719 – 5 February 1720);
  • Emetullah Sultan (29 September 1723 – 28 July 1724);
  • Naile Sultan (15 February 1725 – 10 December 1726);
  • Nazife Sultan (31 May 1725 1 September 1726);
  • Ümmügülsüm Sultan (19 November 1725 – 12 September 1729; buried in New Mosque, Istanbul)
  • Esma Sultan (14 March 1726 – 13 August 1788), daughter of Hanife Kadın;
  • Sabiha Sultan (26 November 1726 – 3 December 1726);
  • Rebia Sultan (4 August 1727 – 4 April 1728);
  • Zübeyde Sultan (29 March 1728 - 4 June 1756), daughter of Emine Muslıhe Kadın;
  • Ümmüseleme Sultan (died 1732);
  • Emine Sultan (died 1732);


Ahmed III (Ottoman Turkish: احمد ثالث, Aḥmed-i sālis) (30 December 1673 – 1 July 1736) was Sultan of the Ottoman Empire and a son of Sultan Mehmed IV (r. 1648-87). His mother was Gülnuş Sultan, originally named Evmania Voria, who was an ethnic Greek. He was born at Hacıoğlu Pazarcık, in Dobruja. He succeeded to the throne in 1703 on the abdication of his brother Mustafa II (1695-1703). Nevşehirli Damat İbrahim Pashaand the Sultan's daughter, Fatma Sultan (wife of the former) directed the government from 1718 to 1730, a period referred to as the Tulip Era.



Ahmed succeeded to the throne on 22 August 1703 when his brother Mustafa II was deposed from the throne and announced his withdrawal of the throne. The first Friday salute was held in Bayezid Mosque. Ahmed III cultivated good relations with France, doubtless in view of Russia's menacing attitude. He afforded refuge in Ottoman territory to Charles XII of Sweden (1682-1718) after the Swedish defeat at the hands of Peter I of Russia (1672–1725) in the Battle of Poltava of 1709. In 1710 Charles XII convinced Sultan Ahmed III to declare war against Russia, and the Ottoman forces under Baltacı Mehmet Pasha won a major victory at the Battle of Prut. In the aftermath, Russia returned Azov back to the Ottomans, agreed to demolish the fortress of Taganrog and others in the area, and to stop interfering in the affairs of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.

On 16 November 1703, he appointed Damad / Enişte Hasan Paşa as grand vizier and Kara Halil Efendi as the judge of Istanbul. Festivities were held for the birth of her first child Fatma Sultan on 22 September 1704, and artisans organized demonstrations in front of the Regiment.

Forced against his will into war with Russia, Ahmed III came nearer than any Ottoman sovereign before or since to breaking the power of his northern rival, whose armies his grand vizier Nevşehirli Damat İbrahim Pasha succeeded in completely surrounding at the Pruth River Campaign in 1711. The subsequent Ottoman victories against Russia enabled the Ottoman Empire to advance to Moscow, had the Sultan wished. However, this was halted as a report reached Istanbul that the Safavids were invading the Ottoman Empire, causing a period of panic, turning the Sultan's attention away from Russia.

Sultan Ahmed III had become unpopular by reason of the excessive pomp and costly luxury in which he and his principal officers indulged; on September 20, 1730, a mutinous riot of seventeen Janissaries, led by the Albanian Patrona Halil, was aided by the citizens as well as the military until it swelled into an insurrection in front of which the Sultan was forced to give up the throne.

Ahmed voluntarily led his nephew Mahmud I (1730-54) to the seat of sovereignty and paid allegiance to him as Sultan of the Empire. He then retired to the Kafes previously occupied by Mahmud and died at Topkapı Palace after six years of confinement.


Sultan Ahmed III receives French ambassador Vicomte d'Andrezel at Topkapı Palace, Jean-Baptiste van Mour.


Ahmed III’s rule

Ahmed III’s twenty-seven year reign was successful. The recovery of Azov and the Morea, and the conquest of part of Persia, managed to counterbalance the Balkan territory ceded to the Habsburg Monarchy through the Treaty of Passarowitz, after the Ottoman Empire was defeated in Austro-Turkish War of 1716-18. In 1716, he sent an army of 33,000 men to capture Corfu from the Republic of Venice but that expedition eventually failed,

Ahmed III left the finances of the Ottoman Empire in a flourishing condition, which had remarkably been obtained without excessive taxation or extortion procedures. He was a cultivated patron of literature and art, and it was in his time that the first printing press authorized to use the Arabic or Turkish languages was set up in Istanbul, operated by Ibrahim Muteferrika (while the printing press had been introduced to Constantinople in 1480, all works published before 1729 were in Greek, Armenian, or Hebrew).

It was in this reign that an important change in the government of the Danubian Principalities was introduced: previously, the Porte had appointed Hospodars, usually native Moldavian and Wallachian boyars, to administer those provinces; after the Russian campaign of 1711, during which Peter the Great found an ally in Moldavia Prince Dimitrie Cantemir, the Porte began overtly deputizing Phanariote Greeks in that region, and extended the system to Wallachia after Prince Stefan Cantacuzino established links with Eugene of Savoy. The Phanariotes constituted a kind of Dhimmi nobility, which supplied the Porte with functionaries in many important departments of the state.

In his reign, renovation of old neighborhoods, cleaning of bazaars, repairing of flowing fountains, dilapidated structures, restoration of city walls, new bends, square fountains, selsebiller, artificial cascades, cet veller and pools, the water-specific architecture of Istanbul reached its peak.


Ahmed lived in Kafes of the Topkapi Palace for six years following his deposition. Where he fall ill and died on 1 July 1736. He was buried in his grandmother’s tomb in Turhan Hatice Sultan Mausoleum in New Mosque, at Eminönü in Istanbul.

Relations with the Mughal Empire

Jahandar Shah

In the year 1712, the Mughal Emperor Jahandar Shah, a grandson of Aurangzeb sent gifts to the Ottoman Sultan Ahmed III and referred to himself as the Ottoman Sultan's devoted admirer.


The Mughal Emperor Farrukhsiyar a grandson of Aurangzeb, is also known to have sent a letter to the Ottomans but this time it was received by the Grand Vizier Nevşehirli Damad Ibrahim Pasha providing a graphic description of the efforts of the Mughal commander Syed Hassan Ali Khan Barha against the Rajput and Maratha rebellion.


  Nevşehirli Damat Ibrahim Pasha 1662-1730

Nevşehirli Damat Ibrahim Pasha

Nevşehirli Damat Ibrahim Pasha 1662-1730 (W)

Political offices
Preceded by
Nişancı Mehmed Pasha
Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire
9 May 1718 – 16 October 1730
Succeeded by
Silahdar Damad Mehmed Pasha



In office
9 May 1718 – 1 October 1730
Monarch Ahmed III
Preceded by Nişancı Mehmet Pasha
Succeeded by Silahdar Damat Mehmed Pasha
Personal details
Born 1662
Died 1 October 1730 (aged 67–68)
Constantinople, Ottoman Empire (present day Istanbul, Turkey)
Nationality Ottoman
Spouse(s) Fatma Sultan
Residence Istanbul


Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire.
Damat Ibrahim Pasha (Ottoman Turkish: نوشہرلی داماد ابراہیم پاشاc. 1662 - 1 October 1730) served as Grand Vizier for Sultan Ahmed III of the Ottoman Empire during the Tulip period. He was also the head of a ruling family which had great influence in the court of Ahmed III. The epithet "Nevşehirli" (meaning "from Nevşehir") is used to distinguish this Grand Vizier from another, Damat Ibrahim Pasha (died 1601).
Early life

Early life

Early life (W)

He was born in Nevşehir, whose former name was Muşkara, in 1662, Sipahi Ali Aga, known as his father, the voivodes of Izdin, is his mother Fatma Hanım. He went to Istanbul in 1689 to see his relatives and to find a job.




Achievements (W)

The abilities of Ibrahim, who directed the government from 1718 to 1730, preserved an unusual internal peace in the empire, though the frontier provinces were often the scenes of disorder and revolt. This was repeatedly the case in Egypt and Arabia, and still more frequently in the districts northward and eastward of the Black Sea, especially among the fierce Noghai tribes of the Kuban. The state of the countries between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea was rendered still more unstable by the rival claims of Russia and the Porte; it was difficult to define a boundary between the two empires in pursuance of the partition treaty of 1723.

The Tulip period, called Lâle Devri (the Tulip epoch) was a time of extravagant garden parties and sumptuous entertainment. In 1730, when Tahmasp II of Safavid attacked Ottoman possessions, the empire's leadership was caught unprepared. Infuriated by the Ibrahim Pasha's apparent indifference to state affairs and by the sultan's life of inordinate luxury — ‘which was rendered the more distasteful to his subjects by its faintly European flavor’ — and by his hesitation in taking up the Safavid challenge, the people and troops in Constantinople revolted. They were led by Patrona Halil, an ex-Janissary from Macedonia. Ahmed III sacrificed Ibrahim and other viziers to the mob in order to save himself.

Sultan Ahmed III did not leave İbrâhim Efendi next to him. He promoted himself quickly and brought rickah-i humayun to the district governor with his wife . Thus, İbrâhim Pasha, who was a damâd-i nocturnal, remained with the sultan in Istanbul as the district governor with the rank of second vizier during the Austrian campaigns (1717-1718). Meanwhile, the steadfastness did not accept offers; He declined to lead the government of a state at war. During the meeting of the armistice that will end the war with Austria and Venice, He accepted Ahmed's offer of grand vizier. Unlike the other grand viziers, Ahmed gave his daughter’s groom the emerald seal of the Tuğra, which he used, as the “seal of humor”.

İbrâhim Pasha first discussed the peace talks with Austria that will end the war. He wrote a letter to the Austrian applicant on peace; He also sent instructions to the Ottoman delegates. He left the army and left Edirne in order to be prepared for the possibility that peace talks would not result. He remained in Sofia until he got the result of peace. Meanwhile, Austria has aggravated the peace conditions and Turkish delegates were mistreated and interim meetings were interrupted. However, through the ambassadors of the UK and the Netherlands. According to this treaty, Small Wallachia, Timişoara, Belgrade, Northern Serbia were left to Austria. Mora was taken from the Venetians and given back to the Ottoman State.


Letter of Farrukhsiyar

Letter of Farrukhsiyar

Letter of Farrukhsiyar (W)

The Mughal Emperor Farrukhsiyar, a grandson of Aurangzeb, is also known to have sent a letter to the Ottomans which was received by the Grand Vizier Ibrahim Pasha, providing a graphic description informing him of the efforts of the Mughal commander Syed Hassan Ali Khan Barha against the Rajput and Maratha rebellion.


Marriage and Descendants

Marriage and Descendants

Marriage and Descendants (W)

Ibrahim Pasha was married to the daughter of the sultan, Fatma Sultan, in 1717 when the Princess was fourteen years old and Ibrahim was fifty years old. This marriage into the Ottoman dynasty earned him the epithet "Damat" (Turkish: bridesgroom, son-in-law). The Couple had two sons.




Character (W)

İbrâhim Pasha was a resilient, generous, modest, forward-thinking, supporter of innovation and a man of greatness. He is renowned for his scholars, poets, and artisans of his time. He protected his relatives so much that he tried to keep those he saw rivals away from the center. He was keen on history and fine arts. He was also busy with calligraphy and sulcus and naskh were from the Prophet Osman. He had also learned from the painter Ömer Efendi.

The translations made by Yanyalı Esad Efendi from Aristotle are dedicated to İbrâhim Pasha. A thirty-two people delegation consisting of scholars and scribes, which can be considered as the academy of the period, was established in Istanbul in 1725 during the period of his tradition.




Architecture (W)

Ibrâhim Pasha left many charity works. The most important of these are the mosque, madrasa, classroom, school, fountain, fountain, public bath, inn and double bath in Nevşehir, and the Dardanhadis Masjid, the fountain, the fountain, the library and the source of their income, built together with his wife Fatma Sultan in Şehzadebaşı. It consists of eighty-two foundation shops. In addition, there was a school in the Hocapaşa district and a dispenser under it, a darülhadis and a hammam behind the New Post Office in Sirkeci, near the Acı Musluk Masjid.

Apart from these, a mosque in Sâdâbâd, a mansion next to Beşiktaş Mevlevi in the Çırağan area in Beşiktaş, next to the Orta Mosque in Yeniodalar in Istanbul and in Sultanahmet and Yalıköy, in Kuruçeşme, and in Bahariye. In addition, there were fountains, public fountain and pools around Mîrâhur Köşkü and Eyüp, in Şemsipaşa in Üsküdar, around Malatyalı Mosque in Üsküdar, near Çubuklu Mosque and Mesire Fountain in Feyzâbâd. There were about ten fountains in Ürgüp and a bazaar known as the Egyptian Bazaar by the sea in Izmir. There were also foundation vineyards and gardens in Antalya, Rumelia and Islands.

The complex was built in a rectangular area, and at the corner where the two streets meet, there is a fountain and a fountain next to it. Behind this is the mosque. The mosque, which is entered from Dedefendi street, has two porches with seven sections, each with a mirror vault, in front of the qibla wall and the side facade. The mosque, made of mixed material in series of stones and bricks, is square in shape and its top is about 10 m. It covers a diameter dome. The transition to the dome was provided with sectional trumpets with sliced bottom and muqarnas. Although the minaret seen today is very new, it is understood that the original minaret, which is entered from the right corner of the mosque, is also here and sits on a massive base behind the fountain. As reported in Hadîkatü'l-cevâmi, the minaret and pulpit of the mosque were built by Küçük (Sinek) Mustafa Pasha (d. 1763-64), the same lineage for a short time.

This complex of Nevşehirli Damad İbrâhim Pasha is an architectural work that must be carefully preserved and kept alive without losing its integrity, as well as the importance of the person who built it on the city's busiest main street. It is also one of the last structures of the classical period of Turkish art among small complexes. In addition, the plan arrangement of the complex consisting of a mosque, library, madrasah, fountain and bazaar is an extremely harmonious and successful example, with no other counterpart.




Death (W)

On 1 October 1730 the body of İbrâhim Pasha, who was murdered in the morning on the morning, was handed over to the soldiers with the corpses of their grooms. The body of İbrâhim Pasha was wandered in the streets of Istanbul and shattered after various insults in Sultanahmet Square.



  Ibrahim Muteferrika
Rational basis for the Politics of Nations

"Why do the Christian nations, which were so weak in the past compared with Muslim nations begin to dominate so many lands in modern times and even defeat the once victorious Ottoman armies?"..."Because they have laws and rules invented by reason."

Ibrahim Muteferrika
, Rational basis for the Politics of Nations (1731)


Ibrahim Muteferrika

Ibrahim Muteferrika (W)


Ibrahim Müteferrika (Turkish: İbrahim Müteferrika; 1674–1745 CE) was a Hungarian-born Ottoman diplomat, publisher, economist, historian, Islamic theologian, sociologist, and the first Muslim to run a printing press with movable Arabic type.

Early life

Early life

Early life (W)

Ibrahim Muteferrika was born in Kolozsvár (present-day Cluj-Napoca, Romania). He was an ethnic Hungarian Unitarian who converted to Islam. His original Hungarian language name is however unknown.



This map of the Indian Ocean and the China Sea was engraved in 1728 by the Hungarian-born Ottoman polymath and publisher Ibrahim Muteferrika; it is one of a series that illustrated Katip Çelebi’s Cihannuma (Universal Geography), the first printed book of maps and drawings to appear in the Muslim World.
Diplomatic Service

Diplomatic Service

Diplomatic Service (W)


At a young age, Ibrahim Muteferrika entered the Ottoman diplomatic services. He took an active part in the negotiations with Austria and Russia. Ibrahim Muteferrika was an active figure in promoting the Ottoman-French alliance (1737-1739) against Austria and Russia. Ibrahim Muteferrika was also acclaimed for his role in the Ottoman-Swedish action against Russia. During his services as a diplomat he is known to have befriended many influential personalities including Osman Aga of Temesvar, a fellow diplomat of Transylvanian origins and former prisoner of war imprisoned in Austria.

It was during his years as a diplomat that he took a keen interest in collecting books that helped him understand the ongoing Renaissance, the emergence of Protestant movements in Europe, and the rise of powerful colonial empires in Europe.



Ibrahim Muteferrika published Abu Nasr Ismail al-Jawhari's Vankulu Lugati (Vankulu's dictionary) in Istanbul in 1729. The first book printed by Muslims making use of movable type, this Arabic-to-Ottoman Turkish dictionary opens with a depiction of the impressive Ottoman imperial order issued by Sultan Ahmet III, which allowed the establishment of Muteferrika's influential and highly regarded publishing house. (L)
Printing Press

Printing Press

Printing Press (W)

His volumes, printed in Istanbul and using custom-made fonts, are occasionally referred to as "Turkish incunabula". Muteferrika, whose last name derived from his employment as a Müteferrika, head of the household, under Sultan Ahmed III and during the Tulip Era, was also a geographer, astronomer, and philosopher.

Following a 1726 report on the efficiency of the new system, which he drafted and presented simultaneously to Grand Vizier Nevşehirli Damat İbrahim Pasha, the Grand Mufti, and the clergy, and a later request submitted to Sultan Ahmed III, he received permission to publish non-religious books (despite opposition from some calligraphers and religious leaders). Muteferrika's press published its first book in 1729, and, by 1743, issued 17 works in 23 volumes (each having between 500 and 1,000 copies). The first book ever published by Muteferrika is "Vankulu Lügati", a 2-volume Arabic-Turkish dictionary. Printing religious books was prohibited (and remained prohibited until 1803).

Among the works published by Müteferrika were historical and generically scientific works, as well as Katip Çelebi's world atlas Cihannüma (loosely translated as: The Mirror of the World or the World Seer). In a digression that he added to his printing, Müteferrika discussed the heliocentrism of astronomy in detail, with references to relatively up-to-date scientific arguments for and against it. In this regard, he is considered one of the first people to properly introduce heliocentrism to the Ottoman readers.

After 1742, however, Ibrahim Muteferrika's printing activities were discontinued and an attempt by the British diplomat James Mario Matra, motivated by the exorbitant prices for manuscript books, to reestablish a press in Istanbul was aborted in 1779. In his account, Matra refers to the strong opposition of the scribes which Müteferrika’s enterprise had to face earlier:

“A Press had been set up here about sixty years ago in the turbulent reign of Ahmed III but those who maintained themselves by copying of Books, apprehending with reason that their trade would be totally ruined, were so loud in their clamours as to alarm the Seraglio, and as they were supported by a seditious Corps of Janissary, the Sultan apprehending what really did after happen, that as he mounted the throne by one insurrection, he might be tumbled from it by another, gave way to their complaints, and suppressed the Press, before anything better than the Quran, Sunnah, and some trifling books of Mathematics had been struck off.” (İ. Kalaycıoğulları, Y. Unat, Kopernik Kuramının Türkiye'deki Yansımaları ("Reflections of Copernican Theory in Turkey"), presented at the XIVth National Astronomy Congress, September 2004, Kayseri, Turkey)




Legacy (W)

Muteferrika died in Istanbul.

A statue of Muteferrika can be found in the Sahaflar Çarşısı adjacent to the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul.[10]


Books published by Muteferrika

Books published by Muteferrika

Books published by Muteferrika (W)

A total of 17 titles have been published by Muteferrika at his own press during his lifetime :

  1. Kitab-ı Lügat-ı Vankulu (Sihah El-Cevheri), 2 volumes, 1729
  2. Tuhfet-ül Kibar fi Esfar el-Bihar, 1729
  3. Tarih-i Seyyah, 1729
  4. Tarih-i Hind-i Garbi, 1730
  5. Tarih-i Timur Gürgan, 1730
  6. Tarih-I Mısr-i Kadim ve Mısr-i Cedid, 1730
  7. Gülşen-i Hülefa, 1730
  8. Grammaire Turque, 1730
  9. Usul el-Hikem fi Nizam el-Ümem, 1732
  10. Fiyuzat-ı Mıknatısiye, 1732
  11. Cihan-nüma, 1732
  12. Takvim el-Tevarih, 1733
  13. Kitab-ı Tarih-i Naima, 2 volumes, 1734
  14. Tarih-i Raşid, 3 volumes, 1735
  15. Tarih-i Çelebizade, 1741
  16. Ahval-i Gazavat der Diyar-ı Bosna, 1741
  17. Kitab-ı Lisan el-Acem el Müsemma bi-Ferheng-i Şuuri, 2 volumes, 1742


(Most of the copies of the book Tarih-i Çelebizade have been bound into the third and last volume of Tarih-i Raşid and sold together with it and thus have erroneously led several sources to believe a total of 16 items have been published.)


Own works

Own works

Own works (W)

  • Risâle Islâmiyye (available in manuscript form) (published by [Esed Cosan] in 1993)



  Nedîm 1681-1730


Nedîm (W)

Ahmed Nedîm Efendi (نديم) (c. 1681 – 30 October 1730) was the pen name (Ottoman Turkish: ﻡﺨﻠﺺ mahlas) of one of the most celebrated Ottoman poets. He achieved his greatest fame during the reign of Ahmed III, the so-called Tulip Era from 1718 to 1730. Both his life and his work are often seen as being representative of the relaxed attitude and European influences of that time. He was known for his slightly decadent, even licentious poetry often couched in the most staid of classical formats, but also for bringing the folk poetic forms of türkü and şarkı into the court.



Life (W)

Nedim, whose real name was Ahmed (أحمد), was born in Constantinople sometime around the year 1681. His father, Mehmed Efendi, had served as a chief military judge (قاضسکر kazasker) during the reign of the Ottoman sultan Ibrahim I. At an early age, Nedim began his studies in a medrese, where he learned both Arabic and Persian. After completing his studies, he went on to work as a scholar of Islamic law.

In an attempt to gain recognition as a poet, Nedim wrote several kasîdes, or panegyric poems, dedicated to Ali Pasha, the Ottoman Grand Vizier from 1713 to 1716; however, it was not until — again through kasîdes — he managed to impress the subsequent Grand Vizier, Ibrahim Pasha, that Nedim managed to gain a foothold in the court of the sultan. Thereafter, Nedim became very close to the Grand Vizier, who effectively served as his sponsor under the Ottoman patronage system. Ibrahim Pasha's viziership coincided with the Ottoman Tulip Era, a time known both for its aesthetic achievements and its decadence, and as Nedim fervently participated in this atmosphere he is often called the “Poet of the Tulip Period.” Nedim is thought to have been an alcoholic and a drug user, most likely of opium.

It is known that Nedim died in 1730 during the Janissary revolt initiated by Patrona Halil, but there are conflicting stories as to the manner of his death. The most popular account has him falling to his death from the roof of his home in the Beşiktaş district of Istanbul while attempting to escape from the insurgents. Another story, however, claims that he died as a result of excessive drinking, while a third story relates how Nedim — terrified by the tortures enacted upon Ibrahim Pasha and his retinue — suddenly died of fright. Nedim is buried in the Üsküdar district of Istanbul.




Work (W)

Nedim is now generally considered, along with Fuzûlî and Bâkî, to be one of the three greatest poets in the Ottoman Divan poetry tradition. It was not, however, until relatively recently that he came to be seen as such: in his own time, for instance, the title of reîs-i şâirân (رئيس شاعران), or "president of poets", was given by Sultan Ahmed III not to Nedim, but to the now relatively obscure poet Osmanzâde Tâib, and several other poets as well were considered superior to Nedim in his own day. This relative lack of recognition may have had something to do with the sheer newness of Nedim's work, much of which was rather radical for its time.

In his kasîdes and occasional poems — written for the celebration of holidays, weddings, victories, circumcisions, and the like — Nedim was, for the most part and with some exceptions, a fairly traditional poet: he used many Arabic and Persian loan words, and employed much the same patterns of imagery and symbolism that had driven the Divan tradition for centuries. It was, however, in his songs (şarkı) and some of his gazels that Nedim showed his most innovativeness, in terms of both content and language.

Nedim's major innovation in terms of content was his open celebration of the city of Istanbul. This can be seen, for example, in the opening couplet (beyit) of his "Panegyric for İbrâhîm Pasha in Praise of Istanbul" (İstanbul'u vasıf zımnında İbrâhîm Paşa'a kasîde):

بو شهر ستنبول كه بىمثل و بهادر
بر سنگکه يكپاره عجم ملکی فداءدر
Bu şehr-i Sıtanbûl ki bî-misl-ü behâdır
Bir sengine yekpâre Acem mülkü fedâdır
O city of Istanbul, priceless and peerless!
I would sacrifice all Persia for one of your stones!


Moreover, in contrast to the high degree of abstraction used by earlier poets, Nedim was fond of the concrete, and makes reference in much of his poetry to specific Istanbul districts and places and even to contemporary clothing fashions, as in the following stanza from one of his songs:

سرملى گوزلی گوزل يوزلی غزالان آگده
زر کمرلى بلى خنجرلى جوانان آگده
باخصوص آرادغم سرو خرامان آگده
نيجه آقميا گوﯖل صو گبى سعدآباده
Sürmeli gözlü güzel yüzlü gazâlân anda
Zer kemerli beli hancerli cüvânân anda
Bâ-husûs aradığım serv-i hırâmân anda
Nice akmaya gönül su gibi Sa’d-âbâd’a
There are kohl-eyed fresh-faced gazelles there
There are gold-belted khanjar-hipped young people there
And of course my love's swaying cypress body is there
Why shouldn't the heart flow like water towards Sa'd-âbâd?


These lines also highlight Nedim's major innovation in terms of language; namely, not only are they a song — a style of verse normally associated with Turkish folk literature and very little used by previous Divan poets — but they also use a grammar and, especially, a vocabulary that is as much Turkish as it is Arabic or Persian, another aspect not much seen in Divan poetry of that time or before.



  Tulip period

“The Music Lesson,” by Frederic Leighton, 1877.

Tulip period

Tulip period (W)

The tulip period, or tulip era (Ottoman Turkish: لاله دورى, Turkish: Lâle Devri), is a period in Ottoman history from the Treaty of Passarowitz on 21 July 1718 to the Patrona Halil Revolt on 28 September 1730. This was a relatively peaceful period, during which the Ottoman Empire began to orient itself towards Europe.

The name of the period derives from the tulip craze among the Ottoman court society. Cultivating this culturally ambiguous emblem had become a celebrated practice. The tulip period illustrated the conflicts brought by early modern consumer culture and was a shared material symbolism. During this period the elite and high-class society of the Ottoman period had established an immense fondness for the tulip, which were utilized in various occasions. Tulips defined nobility and privilege, both in terms of goods and leisure time.

Rise and growth

Rise and growth

Rise and growth (W)

Under the guidance of Sultan Ahmed III's son-in-law, Grand Vizier Nevşehirli Damat İbrahim Pasha, the Ottoman Empire embarked on new policies and programs during this period, which established the first Ottoman language printing press during the 1720s, and promoted commerce and industry.

The Grand Vizier was concerned with improving trade relations and enhancing commercial revenues, which would help to explain the return to gardens and the more public style of the Ottoman court during this period. The Grand Vizier was himself very fond of tulip bulbs, setting an example for Istanbul’s elite who started to cherish the tulip’s endless variety in paint and celebrate its seasonality as well.

The Ottoman standard of dress and its commodity culture incorporated their passion for the tulip. Within Istanbul, one could find tulips from the flower markets to the plastic arts to silks and textiles. Tulip bulbs could be found everywhere; the demand grew within the elite community where they could be found in homes and gardens.

Therefore, the tulip is a symbol with mythical appeal, which can be found from Ottoman palaces to their clothing, which sustains a memory of the Ottoman Empire’s social past. The tulip can be seen as a romantic monument representing the wealthy and elite, and the fragility of despotic rule.




Culture (W)

The Tulip period saw a flowering of arts, culture and architecture. Generally the style of architecture and decoration became more elaborate, being influenced by the Baroque period in movement. A classic example is the Fountain of Ahmed III in front of Topkapi Palace in Istanbul. The architectural style is a fusion of classical Islamic elements with baroque European ones, making it into distinct Ottoman architecture of the 18th century.

The tulip was also praised in poetry and motifs used in paintings. To this day in modern Turkey the tulip is still considered the embodiment of perfection and beauty. Turkish Airlines decorates its planes with a painting of a tulip on its fuselage.


Important figures during the period

Important figures during the period

Important figures during the period (W)

  • Nevşehirli Damat İbrahim Pasha (1718-1730) was the Grand Vizier of the Empire; therefore the period is delineated over his vizierate rather than Sultan Ahmed III
  • Grand Admiral Mustafa Pasa – was the son-in-law of the Grand Vizier and is remembered for establishing forty-four new tulip breeds
  • Ibrahim Muteferrika – a Hungarian who had established the first Ottoman printing press which was seen as a landmark of the period
  • Nedim – a poet who broke new ground by challenging the traditional canon while writing in a classical Ottoman format.
  • Abdulcelil Levni – an outstanding miniature painter who began to work in Edirne to Istanbul where he studied painting and became the court painter where the Ottoman tradition of miniature albums was revived. These albums that Levni painted were called Tulip albums which mirrored the structure of the states itself, ranking distinguished members of the regime according to horticultural achievements.


Anti-Tulip Rebellion

Anti-Tulip Rebellion

Anti-Tulip Rebellion (W)

Tulip prices began to rise in the last decades of the 17th century and peaked in 1726–1727 before state intervention. This reflected the demand for the inflated value of the rare bulbs and escalating demands for flowers in the elite’s palaces and gardens.

Tulip mania demonstrated the state's power to regulate the economy by increasing the prices for bulbs. Courtiers at the time forwarded a petition to denounce the practice of flower sellers, whom they perceived to be taking advantage of the elite by raising the prices of the bulbs. This led to the process of issuing inventories of flowers and price lists to the judge of Istanbul for enforcement.



  Patrona Halil

Patrona Halil

Patrona Halil (W)

Portrait of Patrona Halil made by Jean Baptiste Vanmour

Patrona Halil, (Albanian: Halil Patrona, Turkish: Patrona Halil; c. 1690 in Hrupishta - November 25, 1730 in Constantinople), was the instigator of a mob uprising in 1730 which replaced Sultan Ahmed III with Mahmud I and ended the Tulip period.

Halil was born to an Albanian family in Hrupishta, a village in the then Bitola vilayet. He became a Janissary and after joining a Janissary rebellion in Niš and leading one in 1720 in Vidin, he moved to the capital. He was known to have engaged in petty trade and crafts like working as a hammam attendant. Halil was also a former sailor. He spent much of his time at meyhanes of Galata. Halil was known as Horpeşteli Arnavut Halil after his place of birth and ethnicity but his Albanian compatriots called him Patrona (Vice Admiral).

His followers were 12,000 janissaries, mostly Albanians. For weeks after the revolt, the empire was in the hands of the insurgents. Patrona Halil rode with the new sultan to the Mosque of Eyub where the ceremony of girding Mahmud I with the Sword of Osman was performed; many of the chief officers were deposed and successors to them appointed at the dictation of the bold rebel who had served in the ranks of the Janissaries and who appeared before the sultan bare-legged and in his old uniform of a common soldier. A Greek butcher, named Yanaki, had formerly given credit to Patrona and had lent him money during the three days of the insurrection. Patrona showed his gratitude by compelling the Divan to make Yanaki Hospodar of Moldavia. Yanaki however never took charge of this office.

The Khan of the Crimea assisted the Grand Vizier, the Mufti and the Aga of the Janissaries in putting down the rebellion. Patrona was killed in the sultan's presence after a Divan in which he had commanded that war be declared against Russia. His Greek friend, Yanaki, and 7,000 of those who had supported him were also put to death. The jealousy which the officers of the Janissaries felt towards Patrona, and their readiness to aid in his destruction, facilitated the exertions of Mahmud I's supporters in putting an end to the rebellion.


Patrona Halil, c.1730-37 (oil on canvas), Vanmour, Jean Baptiste (1671-1737).


  📥 🗺 Constantinopel / Jeremiah Wolff, Augsburg c. 1720 (L)

📥 🗺 🔎 Constantinopel



Rare, Highly Detailed View of Sixteenth-Century Istanbul (L)

This exceptional view of Constantinople (Istanbul) was published by Jeremiah Wolff, the most successful map publisher in Augsburg during his time. It is sumptuously detailed and includes the locations of over twenty historic points of interest.

The scene gazes across the Golden Horn, the main inlet of the Bosphorous, with the Pera (Beyoglu) and Galata (Karakoy) neighborhoods situated in the foreground. Old Istanbul is in the background. Old Istanbul, also referred to as the “Historic Peninsula” or “Walled City” was the site of the ancient city of Byzantium and of historic Constantinople.

The view is embellished with sailing ships and elegantly costumed locals in the foreground. A shipyard can be seen on the banks of Old Istanbul toward the left side of the scene, evidence of the thriving Ottoman shipbuilding industry in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The Golden Horn, named for its horn-like shape, has long served as an important naturally-protected inlet for maritime activities. At the time this view was created, the Ottoman Navy was still powerful and there would have been a large merchant fleet in the waters near the city.

There are 26 points of interest noted in this view, each faithfully rendered by Wolff with close attention to detail. Many of these sites are religious institutions, including mosques and churches, as well as Istanbul’s numerous palaces and cultural sites. Istanbul is well known for its striking mixture of Byzantine and Ottoman architecture, evidenced in this view by the numerous domed structures and sprawling palaces. Created at the height of Ottoman imperial rule in Istanbul, the points of interest noted on this view primarily discuss architecture and places that would of interest to a European audience intrigued by the Ottoman Empire.

At far left of the scene, Topkapi Palace can be seen at the edge of Old Istanbul. It is referred to on this view as, “The large Seraglio (harem), palace of the Great Sultans.” In the fifteenth century, it served as the main residence and administrative headquarters of the Ottoman sultanate and continued to be in use by the Ottoman imperial court for a number of centuries.

The Hagia Sophia, referred to on this view as St. Sophia Kirche (Church), is located to the right of Topkapi Palace, rising above the surrounding buildings. Its iconic dome and dual towers can be clearly seen. It is interesting that the Hagia Sophia is described as a church on this view, when it had been a mosque since 1453, after Sultan Mehmed II captured the city from the Byzantine Empire and declared it the new capital of the Ottoman Empire.

Other religious sites include the Church of Galata, the oldest of Istanbul’s Armenian churches, the Chora Church (“Iacob’s Kirche”), as well as such famous mosques as the Bayezid II Mosque (“Sultan Bajazeth Mosche”), Süleymaniye Mosque (“Soliman’s Mosche”), Sultan Ahmed Mosque (“Sultan Mahomet’s Mosche”), Fatih Mosque (“Sultan Mehemet’s Mosche”), Yavuz Selim Mosque (“Sultan Selim’s Mosche”), and Rüstem Pasha Mosque (“Mahomet Bascha Mosche”).

Beyond religious architecture, Wolff notes the “place where the Sultan’s elephants are kept” and the “citadel for the Sultan’s wise advisors” as well as the public waterworks and the Basilica Cistern, the largest Byzantine cistern, described as “columns built atop a cypress grove.” These more colorful places of interest help paint a fascinating picture of the Ottoman Empire through the eyes of Europeans.

This enchanting view of Istanbul is a rare find and exceptional piece of art.



“Istanbul” in Encyclopedia Brittanica, accessed Aug 31, 2019, https://www.britannica.com/place/Istanbul; "Ottoman Navy" in obo in Military History, accessed Aug 31, 2019, https://www.oxfordbibliographies.com/view/document/obo-9780199791279/obo-9780199791279-0172.xml. ACA.




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